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  • April 3, 2014
    Polar Vortex Might Lead to Decreased Stink Bug Populations

    Increased icy cold temperatures brought on from the scary sounding phenomenon that is the polar vortex may have finally brought some relief to homeowners. New research from Virginia Tech scientists suggests the frigid winter temperatures experienced across most of the country this season have nearly annihilated those pesky stink bug populations.

    Over the past few years, the invasive pests have become a serious problem across the nation, particularly in the Mid-Atlantic region. For the past few years, temperatures have been relatively mild, allowing for an increase in pesky home invasions and serious crop damage nationwide.

    But, according to Virginia Tech researchers, the polar vortex conditions this winter season have contributed to an intense decline in stink bug populations across the country, a Washington Post article explains.

    Each fall, VT entomology professor Thomas Kuhar and his team gather hundreds of stink bugs and put them into ventilated 5-gallon buckets filled with foam insulation tubes. The buckets, containing about 100 stink bugs each, are made to simulate conditions where the pests normally hide. They are then stored outside for winter.

    They found that the freezing cold temperatures we’ve been forced to deal with this winter killed off 95 percent of the bugs. So, despite the frigid temperatures we’ve been encountering in most regions across the country, there is light at the end of the tunnel (if this study proves accurate)

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  • February 19, 2014
    The Pest Repercussions of Vines Along Your Home

    Some homeowners think of vines growing on and along the exterior walls of their home as an aesthetically pleasing decoration. Unfortunately, pests see it as a helpful stepping stone on getting into your home.

    “I discovered six raccoons in someone’s chimney, and the home had vines all over the house. It’s perfect for raccoons to climb on,” explains Western’s Mountainside, NJ Branch Manager, Jerry Geraci.

    What Vines May Introduce To Your Home

    Not only are vines are not good for the paint job along a home, they also introduce more pests to your home than you may think.

    • Raccoon
    • Squirrels
    • Birds
    • Additional insects

    Vines may provide harborage for animals, but these animals may also bring insects along with them, such as mites.

    Western’s Home Protection Plan provides seasonal inspections, as well as free emergency visits, in order to keep your home as safe as possible when it comes to intrusive pests. If your home has vines such as these for aesthetic purposes, it means your home’s protection against pests must be as strong as possible.

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